Many U.S. workers are forgoing the traditional office job to work on a contractual or freelance basis. For employers, having contingent workers could mean a savings of time and money, as they don’t have to take the time to train the worker, pay health benefits or contribute to a 401(k).
However, if your business does choose to use contractors or freelancers, you need to make sure your workers are properly classified. Depending on the specific terms of your arrangement with an independent contractor — hours worked, reporting structure, payment schedule, etc. — you might find yourself in the middle of a misclassification lawsuit.
Joy Child, vice president at law firm Alexander, Aronson, Finning & Co., noted that a company wrongly treating its workforce as independent could be liable for payroll taxes, interest and penalties. Regular employees are entitled to certain legal protections and benefits that independent contractors aren’t, and the IRS and state governments are actively looking for clues that a company might be shirking its responsibilities to its workers.
How are independent workers classified?
In the 1990s,
A new study from Robert Half Management Resources revealed that 53 percent of all professionals wish they had more insight into the effects of their contributions on their companies’ bottom lines.
This is especially true of younger workers. Nearly 65 percent of those surveyed who were between the ages 18 and 34 said they wanted more information on how their work helps their company make money.
“Employees who see the direct correlation between their contributions and company performance are more engaged, make better spending decisions and can identify new ways to increase productivity and growth,” Tim Hird, executive director of Robert Half Management Resources, said in a statement.
Currently, 47 percent of the workers surveyed said they are always able to make the connection between their day-to-day duties and how they contribute to the company’s bottom line. Meanwhile,14 percent said they are rarely or never able to connect those dots. [See Related Story: Communication Is Key to Genuine Employee Engagement]
When examined by age group, those typically in leadership roles have the hardest time making those connections. Just 38
In a traditional mentorship, a seasoned professional works with a less experienced and often younger colleague to show the individual the ropes and guide the person through his or her career. But as the business world and its technology continue to evolve, it’s becoming increasingly common for those younger professionals to turn the tables and share their digital skills and perspectives with their older counterparts.
For many organizations, this practice of “reverse mentoring” is a win-win, said Molly DeZurik, content curator at generational research company BridgeWorks. Millennials gain a greater sense of purpose and empowerment, and older employees gain insight and understanding. But DeZurik cautioned against implementing a reverse-mentorship program for the sake of trying out a trend — it has to serve a purpose.
“Millennials aspire to be leaders one day,” she said. “Empowering younger workers to voice their observations paves a fruitful path for millennials, once management positions become a reality.”
“The key is for leadership to create a culture that listens and learns,” added Nikhil Hasija, CEO of Azuqua, a company that synchronizes data across multiple
How you treat the job seekers you don’t hire could affect your chances of finding the best employees in the future, new research finds.
A study from CareerArc, an HR technology provider, and Future Workplace, revealed that 60 percent of job seekers have had a poor candidate experience, and of those, 72 percent have shared that negative experience online on an employer review site, on a social networking site, or directly with a colleague or friend.
“Companies need to start humanizing their candidate experience because job seekers can easily share their negative experiences online and decide never to apply to that company again,” Dan Schawbel, research director at Future Workplace, said in a statement. “Treat your candidates like you would your employees or customers because they have the power to refer strong candidates even if they don’t get hired.”
“This survey reveals a critical blind spot employers have when it comes to candidate experience, and that is the experience of the declined candidate,” said Robin Richards, CEO of CareerArc. “In this tightening labor market, companies can no longer afford to overlook this vocal majority of applicants who didn’t get the job, but simply expect to
When an employee resigns, most bosses would assume that they won’t see or hear much from that person again, even if they’re still on friendly professional terms. So most of them might be surprised to find that someone who voluntarily left their company is coming back for that new job opening.
While some professionals would never dream of returning to work for a former employer, it’s actually becoming more common: Research indicates that workers are open to reapplying for a position at a company they once worked for, and the majority of employers would welcome them back with open arms. But is hiring a “boomerang” employee the right choice for your team?
Regardless of how either party felt upon the employee’s resignation, there are a few clear advantages to rehiring someone who used to work for you. Amber Hyatt, a certified senior professional in human resources (SPHR) and director of product marketing for HR software company SilkRoad, noted that the boomerang employee will already have some important pre-existing knowledge about your company.
“Hiring former employees means familiarity with your business — the mission, culture, values, players, training and organizational structure are already in place,” Hyatt told
One of your employees has been acting strange lately. He or she has been taking a lot of time off for doctor’s appointments and sick days. The employee may have asked to shift his or her work schedule without an explanation. Perhaps the person’s productivity has been on a downward spiral in recent weeks, or he or she has seemed particularly withdrawn from the team.
Whether you’ve heard rumors from other staff members or you simply have a gut feeling, the writing is on the wall: This person is probably going to quit.
Disengagement: The biggest sign of a quitter
Many career and HR experts agree that the above-named behaviors are among the most common signs that an employee might be looking for a job elsewhere. But overall, the biggest indicator that someone is planning an exit is a consistent drop-off in engagement at work.
Asher Weinberger, CEO and founder of menswear company Twillory, noted that managers should be on the lookout for sudden withdrawal from office social activity in particular.
“Even if the quality and commitment to their tasks is maintained, once a person knows they are leaving, they no longer feel
If you’re worried that a workplace fundraiser will make your employees feel obligated to donate money they can’t afford, think again.
New research from Gallup shows that the vast majority of employees who donate money to fundraisers at work do so because they want to, not because they feel they have to. Just 13 percent of workers donate money to charitable organizations because they feel obligated to do so, while only 4 percent contribute money because their employers support the charity.
“Few employees feel pressured by workplace fundraisers, perhaps because their motivations for donating to them have little to do with their employers,” the study’s authors wrote. “External forces, including their employers, have little sway.”
Employees listed several other motivations for donating that are more important than what their employers do. Those included that it’s the right thing to do, the charity supports someone in the employee’s life, someone in the person’s personal life asked him or her to donate, and the individual sees a personal story of someone the organization is helping and wants to help.
The key to getting employees to donate money to workplace fundraisers is to make the process easy,
It’s never easy to let go of a worker, especially one who has devoted time and hard work to your company. But the unpleasant reality of running a business is that sometimes, people must be fired. Prolonging the process only leads to further issues that can stunt your company’s growth.
Terminating an employee is complex, and going about it the wrong way may result in an angry former staff member at best, and a hefty lawsuit at worst. Here’s how to go about this difficult process properly, from both a legal and a professional standpoint.
Before the meeting
Firing an employee is never as simple as saying, “You’re fired.” Proper termination is not a rash, spur-of-the-moment decision, but a well-documented process that must prove that you, as the employer, are justified in your actions. Otherwise, you’re inviting the potential for a wrongful termination lawsuit.
“Throughout the entire termination process, HR leaders need to work with the employee’s manager on properly documenting instances of performance and/or behavioral discussions,” said Deb LaMere, vice president of employee engagement at Ceridian, a human capital management technology company. “When it comes to terminating an employee for performance
Think your employees get your company’s culture? They might not see it the same way you do: New research has revealed disconnects between managers and their employees regarding their companies’ values and culture.
According to the study, which was conducted by corporate training company VitalSmarts, workers’ values vary by seniority. VitalSmarts found that leaders want innovation, initiative, candor and teamwork. In contrast, nonmanaging employees think their managers really want obedience, predictability, deference to authority and competition with peers.
These miscommunications negatively affect workers’ performance, as well as decrease their motivation, commitment and confidence in their company, the researchers said. In fact, of the people surveyed, only 9 percent of nonmanaging employees and 15 percent of managers and executives have positive views of their corporate culture.
To bridge these gaps in perception, Joseph Grenny and David Maxfield, the lead researchers on the study and co-founders of VitalSmarts, recommended the following leadership strategies:
Understand why you want to change your culture. If you feel like a cultural change will help bring employees and bosses together, consider the specific business motivations for changing it. Launching solutions as a “feel-good hobby” without concrete, measurable reasons can damage your
Although you should be thorough when searching for and hiring new employees, if the process is too long, you could cost yourself a shot at hiring the best candidates.
A study from Robert Half revealed that when forced to endure a lengthy hiring process, nearly 40 percent of job seekers lose interest in the position and pursue other opportunities, and 18 percent decide to stay put in their current job. In addition, more than 30 percent said a drawn-out hiring process makes them question whether the employer is good at making decisions in other areas.
“The hiring process provides a window into the overall corporate culture,” Paul McDonald, senior executive director of Robert Half, said in a statement. “If people feel their career potential will be stifled by a slow-moving organization, they will take themselves out of the running.”
Overall, job seekers find a lengthy hiring process infuriating. Nearly 60 percent of those surveyed said the most frustrating part of the job search is the long wait after an interview to hear if they got the job. The research shows that 23 percent lose interest in the employer if they don’t hear back within one week after
Don’t be so sure that your employees aren’t getting ready to jump ship. A new study from ManpowerGroup Solutions revealed that 37 percent of workers around the globe, and 41 percent of U.S. workers, are “continuous candidates” who are always looking for their next job opportunity.
Knowing that many employees aren’t fully committed to their organizations, employers have more pressure than ever to improve their retention efforts if they want to keep their turnover to a minimum, according to the authors of the new research.
“In organizations where employers are not meeting their candidates’ expectations or aspirations for advancement, that is where individuals will be more likely to always be looking out for their next opportunity,” Kate Donovan, senior vice president of ManpowerGroup Solutions and global recruitment outsource processing president, said in a statement.
The research attributes continuous candidates to three main factors:
- New ways of working. The growth of the gig economy and on-demand jobs, like those with Uber and TaskRabbit, are changing the way people work and the types of jobs they look for.
- Increase in contract work. Technology firms have spurred an increase in contract work. Because they are constantly looking for
Elections tend to revolve around red and blue states, but a slew of ballot questions regarding medical marijuana might be turning some states green this November. On Election Day, voters in at least nine states will consider various measures that would decriminalize or legalize either the medical or recreational use of marijuana.
The specifics of each ballot question and their contexts are different, but employers everywhere should be aware of how the changing marijuana landscape affects their business and its employment policies. As states legalize and decriminalize on an individual basis, the federal government maintains that cannabis is an illegal substance, creating a lack of uniformity around marijuana regulations. Naturally, this has bred confusion among employers as to what is expected of them when it comes to hiring practices and drug screening.
To find out what you need to know about the potential changes on the horizon and how they impact your business, Business News Daily spoke with Dr. Todd Simo, chief medical officer at employment screening company HireRight.
Business News Daily: Tell us a bit about the current state of cannabis policy in the U.S.
Dr. Todd Simo: Today, there are 24 states that
Earlier this month, I met with a recruiter about an independent contract gig at a prestigious bank in town. At the end of the interview, the recruiter told me he’d check my criminal background history. He then asked me if it was OK to check my credit.
I later learned background credit checks were standard for the financial industry. CNN reports employers include credit checks in their due-diligence process to prevent fraud and embezzlement.
In a NerdWallet blog post, author Lindsay Konsko notes that credit histories ― not your score ― may be seen as a reflection of your personal trustworthiness and responsibility. That’s why 47 percent of employers, even outside of the financial industry, check applicants’ credit reports, according to the Society for Human Resource Management.
However, when credit histories are used to compare candidates, credit can be used to judge an applicant’s ability (or inability) to work. An applicant’s self-worth then reflects his or her financial background just as much as, if not more than, their education and professional experience. [See Related Story: 10 Job Interview Questions That Aren’t Legal]
Should you check an applicant’s credit report?
If your businesses uses
While baby boomers, Gen Xers and millennials don’t always see eye-to-eye on what they want out of their careers, there is one issue they all agree on. Employees from all three generations say not getting paid enough is what’s most likely to have them looking for a new job, research finds.
The new study from Paychex revealed that overall nearly 70 percent of employees say that a low salary is the primary reason they have left or would leave a job.
Although the largest percentage of employees from each generation indicated how much they’re paid is a driving factor behind them staying or leaving their employer, some generations say it’s a slightly more motivating factor for them.
“All three generational categories (baby boomers, Generation X, and millennials) ranked a low salary as a top reason to leave, but millennials put more importance on salary, with a whopping 70.82 percent of those surveyed marking it as a reason they quit,” the study’s authors wrote.
Generation X employees weren’t far behind, however, with 69.32 percent saying they have left or would leave a job because a low salary. While still critical to baby boomers, it was
The next generation of employees is getting ready to enter the workforce and they have a much different outlook on what they want out of their careers than those who have come before them, new research finds.
The study from the job search site Monster revealed that soon-to-be professionals from Generation Z, those born between 1994 and 2010, are more driven by money and ambition than those who are already working. Specifically, 70 percent of those surveyed from Gen Z said their top work motivator is money, compared with just 63 percent of employees from all other generations.
Being able to work in a job they are passionate about is another motivator. The study found that 46 percent of those from Generation Z, specifically between ages 15 and 20, said the ability to pursue their passion is a top motivating factor, compared with only 32 percent of baby boomers, Gen Xers and millennials.
A driven generation
The next generation of workers appears more willing to put in the extra effort needed to achieve their goals. Nearly 60 percent of those surveyed from Generation Z said they would work nights and weekends for higher pay, opposed to